Enter Sandman

The life of Rielle Hunter already feels like an elevator pitch for a postmodern genre-mashup of a novel: Bit player in Jay McInerney/Brett Easton Ellis books leaves the printed page, goes New Age, and seduces a presidential candidate. Now we have our opening chapter, part Godfather and part Double Indemnity

Before she was former Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards' mistress, before she was Rielle Hunter, before she was the face splashed on national television networks, she was the teenage equestrienne Lisa Druck of Ocala....

Hunter's father, James D. Druck, a successful Ocala lawyer representing insurance companies during the 1980s, was implicated in a scam that involved a local man, Tommy "The Sandman" Burns, who electrocuted horses for their owners to collect the insurance money. One of Burns' first victims was the show horse Lisa Druck rode, Henry the Hawk.

Burns said in a 1992 Sports Illustrated interview that James Druck showed him how to electrocute Lisa's horse using a stripped extension cord and a wall socket. Burns said Druck showed him the scam so Druck could collect $150,000 in insurance.

Burns was called Sandman, the Ocala Star-Banner reports, because "when he showed up at horse shows, invariably a horse would mysteriously die."

[Via Sam Smith.]

Update: The horse-killing scandal also inspired an episode of Law & Order. I think that means that both American Psycho and the 2008 Democratic primaries exist only in the mind of Tommy Westphall.

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  • Naga Sadow||

    I need a cool nickname too. Naga "Machete" Sadow has a nice ring to it.

  • Dello||

    Any man who would kill a horse...must really love baseball! :P

  • Nigel Watt||

    Well, guess what I have stuck in my head now.

    EXIIIIIIT LIIIIIIIGHT

  • Episiarch||

    Naga "Nancy" Sadow

  • ||

    In the future of mainstream media, inane details in the lives of random people will be exposed like Reagan's polyps for all the world to see.

    Frankly, who cares about shady characters out of this bimbo's childhood?

  • ||

    One of the other oddities about this case, noted by Deceiver.com: websites related to Hunter keep vanishing. The copy in the Internet Archive vanished a few days after Deceiver.com found it. Another copy was found on the Eqyptian archive, and then it vanished a few days later. Does anyone know if this sort of thing is unusual? Is archive.org giving in to political/legal pressure, or can anyone call them up have their old sites erased?

  • ||

    Holy Horsehairs! This was a Law and Order (Generic) episode.

  • ||

    Burns said in a 1992 Sports Illustrated interview that James Druck showed him how to electrocute Lisa's horse using a stripped extension cord and a wall socket.

    Horseshit! The lethality of 110 house current is vastly overrated. You couldn't kill a horse with an extension cord unless you convinced him to swallow it. Even then it would have to be like a 50' three pronged industrial cord, and hope it wrapped itself around the poor creatures airway. But electrocuted?? Not fucking likely.

  • Jesse Walker||

    Holy Horsehairs! This was a Law and Order (Generic) episode.

    Really? Do you have a link for that?

  • ||

    Horseshit! The lethality of 110 house current is vastly overrated. You couldn't kill a horse with an extension cord unless you convinced him to swallow it. Even then it would have to be like a 50' three pronged industrial cord, and hope it wrapped itself around the poor creatures airway. But electrocuted?? Not fucking likely.

    What, have you been doing experiments or something?

  • Naga Sadow||

    Episiarch,

    Errrrr . . . no. Naga "Stone Cold" Sadow?

  • Naga Sadow||

    Already taken . . . hmmmmmm . . . . (muses on the issue).

  • Episiarch||

    Naga "Juicy" Sadow

    Naga "Moleskin" Sadow

    Naga "Yarmulke" Saga

    Naga "California Roll" Saga

  • Abdul||

    Funny, if ultimately irrelevant, details. Liked this one:

    The yearbook lists activities for Druck as "swim team, Spanish, homecoming court and debutant," but the school didn't have a swim team and she's not listed with members of the homecoming court.

    Bet her spanish is pretty rusty too.

  • Naga Sadow||

    California Roll? I like it. What about . . . wait for it . . . Naga "Liger" Sadow?

  • Jesse Walker||

    Funny, if ultimately irrelevant, details.

    Like hell they're irrelevent. I don't give a damn about John Edwards, but the woman he slept with is some sort of nexus point for the last three decades of cultural history. This Law & Order/American Psycho cross-over has me half-convinced we're all living in the Tommy Westphall Universe.

  • Fluffy||

    Yup, it was a Law and Order episode.

    Lenny and Ray get mad because they are sent to investigate the death of Mr. Wiggles, when they're homicide detectives and not horse homicide detectives. But they uncover a human murder because they just can't stop tugging at the thread.

  • ||

    This sounds like a scam I had going on in grade school, except it was with goldfish instead of horses.

  • Episiarch||

    California Roll? I like it.

    Yeah, I liked California Roll too. But that will suffer from "nickname drift". Which is when a nickname gets shortened and then starts to take on a totally new connotation.

    For instance, I call SugarFree "NutraSweet". But I might shorten it to "Nutra", which would make me think of Devo's "NuTra" from New Traditionalists, and might actually become to be seen as Devo-related and not based on an artificial sweetener.

  • Jerry||

    This must be the one: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0629216/

  • Episiarch||

    the woman he slept with is some sort of nexus point for the last three decades of cultural history

    It's more interesting specifically because it has so many strange connections. And there is sex involved, which interests everybody except Naga, for he is a spud-boy and tired of the soup du jour.

  • Elemenope||

    Naga "Sith Lord" Sadow has the singular virtue of being truth in advertising.

    But it would only work on people under the age of 30.

  • ||

    Occam, your probably the reason it's so hard to insure your fish these days.

  • ||

    you're

  • ||

    Let him be deemed, Naga "Nature Boy" Sadow, and be done with it.

  • ||

    Do single quotes work?

  • ||

    Apparently so.

  • ||

    "I need a cool nickname too."
    What are we, in a Seinfeld episode?
    Naga "Koko" Sadow.

  • Episiarch||

    Citizen "Booger" Nothing

  • ||

    Who told you?

  • Naga Sadow||

    Pro Lib,

    There is actually a lawyer in Georgia or Alabama who uses that handle. His gimmick is something on the level of "You hire me, and I hammer the money out of em!".

    As for you Elemenope . . . (waves hand in front of screen) . . . you WILL call me Naga "Overlord" Sadow.

  • Naga Sadow||

    Episiarch,

    Spud boy? Possibly. But not interested in sex stories? Ridiculous! What part of me being a bartender have you not understood? What do you think the cocktail servers talk about? I'll give you a hint, it ain't home and gardening tips.

  • Chuck||

    Hey, PL, shouldn't you be, like, bringing in the patio furniture or something?

  • ||

    Chuck "What Happened to Me After Season One?" Cunningham,

    What, for a tropical storm/low Cat. 1? Ha! It looks like it's going to make landfall south of here, anyway. Besides, Tampa has arranged for Orlando to get clobbered by hurricanes in its stead for the next 100 years.

  • Elemenope||

    I'll give you a hint, it ain't home and gardening tips.

    Drinking & Driving Tips?

    (What, you waiving your hand like that like you're some kinda Jedi. I'm a Libertarian! Mind tricks don't work on me...only money.)

  • Episiarch||

    What do you think the cocktail servers talk about?

    OK, so let's have some stories then, Naga "Voyeur" Sadow.

  • ||

    Chuck,

    I take it from your URL that you're in Ft. Myers. Last I heard, the storm was heading right for you, so I hope you're moving your furniture in. SW Florida has suffered enough, so I hope the storm doesn't strengthen much.

    Hurricane season sure sucks. If hurricanes miss Florida, then they just go and threaten all of the Gulf oil operations. Not a good thing. We need to build a wall or something.

  • ||

    Oddly enough, the Law & Order episode was based on the Helen Brach (heiress to the Brach Candy fortune) Horse Murders case, in which Tommy Burns was a participant.

  • Xeones||

    May i present: from Norfolk, Virginia, Lowell 'The Hammer' Stanley.

  • Naga Sadow||

    Episiarch,

    LMAO. I had to look up the damn word! I have way to many stories so I will just recap the headlines of the last few weeks.

    1. Cocktail waitress spill coffee down her cleavage prompting the debate as to whether her tits are real.

    2. Cocktail waitress was apparently raped by her husband. Not ex-husband, or separated husband but husband. No idea what that is about and no divorce papers drawn up that anyone seems aware of.

    3. Cocktail waitress was fired for disparaging remarks to ex-boyfriend at blackjack table. Apparently said boyfriend thought it was in bad taste for everyone to know he had a baby dick.

    4. Two cocktail waitresses romantically involved with barback at the steak house. Lucky bastard.

    5. Apparently a poker dealer had three girlfriends. One in Biloxi, one in Mobile, and one in Slidell. God among men to me but scumbag to cocktial servers.

  • Episiarch||

    Not bad. What are the ultimate stories of all time, though?

  • Dello||

    The best way to save the lawn furniture during a Cat 1 is too invite all your friends over to sit in them while the "storm" blows over...

  • Naga Sadow||

    Episiarch,

    Those stories don't involve sex. Matter of fact, the best damn stories I have only have me in one of them.

  • Dello||

    The best damn stories I have about sex only have me in one of them, too.

  • Naga Sadow||

    Thanks for the support Dello.

  • Episiarch||

    You guys need to do more coke. That'll turn things around.

  • TallDave||

    My favorite part is the revelation by a regional paper that Edwards called them a while back and told them that since his wife had cancer, they shouldn't print these awful lies.

  • Dello||

    Epi,

    I tried coke once, but she ended up liking the bottle more than me...

  • Matt||

    The only horse killing for insurance plot I remember is from the Sopranos. Tony beats the life out of Ralphie ostensibly for killing Pie-O-My, but really because of that pregnant dancer he killed. Back when you thought the point of the show was to figure out Tony, it was gripping teevee.

  • ev||

    interestingly enough, that episode of law and order was on today.

    and instead of sandman, the horse-killer's name is T-bore. ahhhhh it might be T-gore. i forget. but to be frank. both are unspeakably badass.

  • ||

    Actually, 120 Volts is more than enough to kill a horse or even an elephant.

    They insert the extension cord into the horse's rectum and then press the tickle switch. Moist electrolytes make a perfect circuit.

  • Mad Max||

    "Hunter's father . . . was implicated in a scam . . ."

    The article doesn't mention Hunter's father getting convicted. It says that the horse-killing guy and an accomplice (not Hunter's father) got convicted of animal cruelty and fraud.

    What evidence is cited to implicate Druck?

    "Burns said in a 1992 Sports Illustrated interview that James Druck showed him how to electrocute Lisa's horse using a stripped extension cord and a wall socket. Burns said Druck showed him the scam so Druck could collect $150,000 in insurance."

    Oh, well, if a convicted criminal says Druck did it, Druck must be guilty!

  • TallDave||

    Actually, 120 Volts is more than enough to kill a horse or even an elephant.

    It's not the volts, it's the amps.

  • ||

    Which Simpsons episode is that picture from?

  • Jonathan||

    What evidence is cited to implicate Druck?

    Druck pater died before it went to trial.

  • ||

    Andrew Young the admitted father of the John Edwards story: The arrests for worthless checks, DWI, burglary, criminal mischief, the federal tax lien

    webofdeception.com

  • sathi2000||

    you'll have to apply for a work permit like everyone else. Besides, if anyone should have an automatic right to work in the UK, it's Canadians, and they don't enjoy such a privilege either.Martha has always been as arrogant as hell
    http://www.mirei.com

  • ||

    People who claim containment was a viable strategy are ignoring the fact that al Qaeda used containment policies as a justification for killing Americans. Iraq was always a catch-22, damned if you do, damned if you don't, damned if you run away.
    Austin Roofing Company

  • Nike Dunk High||

    thanks

  • ||

    Iraq was always a catch-22, damned if you do, damned if you don't, damned if you run away.
    Mother's Day Flowers

  • rocks2010||

    then it vanished a few days later. Does anyone know if this sort of thing is unusual? Is archive.org giving in to political/legal pressure, or can anyone call them up have their old sites erased?
    State Divorce

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